Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, a leading science and technology company and AMCM, Starnberg, Germany, announced a cooperation agreement on the 3D printing of tablets.
AMCM offers custom additive manufacturing systems and is a sister company of 3D-printing vendor EOS. The cooperation targets GMP-conform (Good Manufacturing Practice) tablet formulation development and production for clinical trials in a first step and later also commercial manufacturing services.
“Our partnership with AMCM / EOS has the potential to revolutionize the way tablets are produced. It will be a massive move towards digitalization of the industry,” said Isabel de Paoli, Chief Strategy Officer at Merck KgaA, Darmstadt, Germany. “Our goal is to develop the industrial application of this technology, which we will make available for clinical trials first, and then move to full digital solutions at commercial scale.”
Through this partnership, clinical development of drugs is accomplished by using powder bed fusion methods. In addition, 3D printing allows for API (active pharmaceutical development) formulation to be scalable while avoiding costly reformulations throughout the entire pharmaceutical development and commercial production processes. As a result, tablet manufacturing may become faster and cheaper.
Beyond the aforementioned objectives, the vision is to allow flexible and sustainable local tablet production according to specific market requirements as well as adaptation to patient needs.